By Jean-Marc Aubert
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The Boletti circus and its menagerie (lions, baby tigers, horses, llama, camel) settled on Tuesday in the Mosson district. The town hall of Montpellier is mobilized, because, a wish voted at the beginning of the year by the municipal council prohibits circuses with animals.
The convoy with colorful vehicles landed this Tuesday morning in a place where no one expected him: a corner of the parking lot of the Saint-Paul shopping center, Mosson district, adjoining a discount supermarket.
Trucks and cages that house lions and baby tigers, the small tents where the llama, the dromedary, horses and ponies are parked, as well as the larger one, occupying a private space, where the circus acts are to take place from Wednesday to Sunday, with the highlight of the show a beast tamer, including baby tigers if the advertising is to be believed.
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We learn this evening that the office of the mayor, Michaël Delafosse, is looking for the owner of the land to obtain his agreement in order to evacuate the circus. “At 7:30 p.m., the owner had not yet been identified,” said the mayor’s office. Municipal police carried out a check at the end of the afternoon, before the arrival on site of the elected representative Coralie Mantion, delegate for sustainable development of the territory, operational town planning and land control. A dilemma arises, indeed: the town hall of Montpellier is bound by a voted wish in October 2020 to ban circuses with animals in the town and attacked before administrative justice by theAssociation for the defense of family circuses strongly contesting it. But, the Boletti circus is installed on private land. “Since the wish of 2020 authorizing only circuses without animals, those having a zoo or a menagerie are prohibited from occupying public space. We must therefore have the green light from the owner to force the convoy to leave, ”confirms Michaël Delafosse’s cabinet. The situation will certainly change tomorrow.
Regarding the wish for 2020, last January, in an unexpected judgment rendered against the opinion of the Public Rapporteur, Montpellier Administrative Court ruled the City. What will now happen to the Boletti circus, whose head office is in Six-Fours-les-Plages, near Toulon, in the Var? Will he finally be allowed to stay in Saint-Paul, a stone’s throw from Avenue de l’Europe? Will he have to move quickly from this place to settle in another district? Or will he be summoned to leave the city and the Metropolis definitively, even if the owner of the land opposes it, the wish of the City obliges? What a circus!
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